‘Time to talk,’ says Zelensky; over 6.5 million displaced in Ukraine: 10 points | World News

It’s Day 24 of the Ukraine war with little breakthrough in sight and the Russian forces’ advance seemingly stalled for another day. Devastating images, however, have emerged from the port city of Mariupol where an iconic theatre came under attack on Thursday – over a thousand people had taken shelter there amid Russian shelling, officials had said. Visuals showed people being dug out of rubble. More than 6.5 million have been displaced in the war, according to the UN estimates.

Here are top updates on the Ukraine war:

1. In a video address released early Saturday, Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelenskyy called for meaningful peace and security talks with Moscow, news agency Reuters reported. “The time has come for a meeting, it is time to talk,” he said.

2. Russia’s president Vladimir Putin on Friday accused Kyiv of “war crimes” amid such accusations being made against Moscow with the war about to complete nearly a month. In a call with France’s Emmanuel Macron, “attention was drawn to the numerous war crimes committed daily by the Ukrainian security forces,” the Kremlin said, according to news agency AFP.

3. On Friday, Putin appeared in a big rally, news agency AP reported, while several Ukraine cities continue to resist the offensive. “We have not had unity like this for a long time… shoulder to shoulder, they help and support each other,” he said in an address and yet again took the focus to his fight against Nazism.

4. A crucial round of talks was also held between US president Joe Biden and China’s Xi Jinping on Friday where China was told to act against Moscow.

5. In talks with Macron, Putin also alleged that Kyiv was bombing the rebel-held regions, and “in particular massive rocket and artillery attacks on the cities of Donbas,” the Kremlin said.

6. Russia has been quoted as saying in reports that its forces were “tightening the noose” around the besieged Ukrainian port of Mariupol on Friday as concern grew over mass civilian.

7. On the casualties in Mariupol, Zelensky said there is no official figure. While local officials had earlier said thousands have been killed.

8. US Secretary of State Antony Blinken on Friday (local time) held a phone call with Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba.Secretary Blinken and Foreign Minister Kuleba discussed the growing number of civilian casualties caused by President Putin’s brutal and unjustified war of choice. The Secretary commended the incredible courage and fierce determination of the Ukrainian people as they defend their country against Russian forces who have shown little regard for human life,” a US State Department readout said.

9. The human cost of the war has been tremendous as the war is about to complete a month.

10. The UN says more than 6.5 million people have been displaced.

(With inputs from AP, AFP, Reuters)

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